Mushtaq Ahmed

Writer Ahmed was arrested alongside ten people under the Digital Security Act for writing online about the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. After nearly 11 months in detention,… More

Writers at Risk Database Azimjon Askarov

Azimjon Askarov

Askarov died July 25, 2020 after contracting pneumonia in Kyrgyz state custody. He was serving a life sentence for alleged involvement in ethnic violence, a charge understood as politically-motivated… More

Writers at Risk Database

Yang Tongyan Yang Tianshui

Persecuted for his role in the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, Yang spent over two decades in prison for counter-revolutionary activity, from 1990-2000 and 2005-2017. He died of brain cancer… More

Writers at Risk Database

Kitzito Mihigo

Musician Mihigo was arrested and sentenced to 10 years in prison for allegedly plotting to kill President Paul Kagame and for inciting hate against the government. He was pardoned… More

Writers at Risk Database

Aron Atabek Aron Yedigheev

Activist, writer, and publisher Atabek was convicted in 2007 of organizing mass disorder and killing a police officer, charges unsupported by sound testimony. While serving his 18 year prison… More

Baktash Abtin

Baktash Abtin

Poet and filmmaker Abtin, with two other board members of the Iranian Writers Association, was convicted in 2019 for openly opposing state censorship policies. Abtin's six-year prison sentence was… More

Haji Mirzahid Kerimi

Kerimi, former Kashgar Publishing House staff, was arrested and detained for his role in publishing books deemed “problematic” for their “improper” political content, and was handed an 11-year suspended… More

Writers at Risk Database

Liu Xiaobo

A pro-democracy activist and writer, Liu was arrested in 2009, charged with “inciting subversion of state power,” and sentenced to 11 years in prison in 2010 for penning seven… More

Yang Tongyan | Status: Death in Custody | China

A writer and member of the Independent Chinese PEN Center, Yang Tongyan was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for “subversion of state power,” and died in November 2017 while… More

Liu Xiaobo | Status: Death in Custody | China

Liu Xiaobo, a renowned literary critic, writer, political activist, and 2010 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, was charged with "inciting subversion of state power," and sentenced to 11-years in prison… More